The practice of keeping a journal for exploring ideas and feelings – past, present and future – which impact your life has a magical quality in identifying, sifting and clarifying your true thoughts. Journaling represents the chronicle of your life – authored by you.
It is your own book in which you can rewrite your past, change your current narrative and formulate your chosen character in the future. Journaling is a wonderful tool for understanding your internal emotions when stressful or anxious situations arise. It allows you to rejuvenate your thinking and eject negative thoughts. The very essence of you is in your journal – and in your life story, journaling is your only true friend.
Your journal will never judge you. It never tells you what to do. It does not think it knows better than you. It is never too busy to listen to anything you have to say. It always has your best interests at heart. It wants your success and well-being. It knows you intimately – your very core. It understands you; empathises with you; connects with you; supports you in anything you do. No other support network offers what your journal does. Whether it was yesterday, today or tomorrow, journaling enables you to be in complete control of your life.
Journaling acts as your personal counsellor.
It cleanses previous issues and problems and helps you to let go of old ideas and beliefs which do not work for you. It is receptive to endlessly hearing about your traumas without complaint. It demands to know about your past and for you to share your innermost feelings. Your secrets of the past are safe and held by the journal with unconditional trust.
Journaling reflects back the now.
It mirrors your deepest thoughts and feelings at this current moment in time. It permits you to step away from any problems and take a more balanced view of the circumstances. It allows you to breathe; untangle the knots that trouble you and gain a clearer – truer – perspective on surrounding issues. It opens your mind to viewing the World through a different lens; to finding creative solutions; to self-express without recrimination; to be you today.
Journaling imagines your future as you want it to be.
Tomorrow is created by setting down your desires, your wishes, your hopes – all for the purpose of making a better life. Journaling injects excitement, passion and motivation into your future plans. Shaping your future by writing about it is as cathartic as it is inspirational. Setting goals, introducing new values, drawing up ambitious plans is a powerful technique which cements your vision into your future reality.
Throughout the ages, wise men have used journaling as the most robust coping strategy when under duress. Reflective thinking, processing the present and sculpting the future – during horrific times far worse than today – are methods by which men could create order in a chaotic World – as you can.
Your journal is a unique work – as individual as your fingerprint. Nobody can ever write about you like you can. But it is so much more. Your journal is your friend. Not just any friend – but your truest friend.
Each of us has the ability to pick up a book and start reading; start educating our minds; and start taking control of our own lives. Books inspire us; they challenge our thoughts; they offer us guidance and council in areas where they are most needed.
We are at a unique stage in history where every topic and subject has been written about; every experience known to Man has been described and every thought and sense has been recorded. Right now, at this very moment, we have the capability of accessing every book in existence that has been written – at the touch of a button.
Biographies, self-development books and factual novels allow us to be in contact with the greatest minds that have graced the planet. Their books are available at any time of our choosing – to read, to absorb, to learn and, ultimately, to improve our lives for the better. Books give us immediate access to role-models and mentors from the past who have overcome insurmountable problems – and lived to tell their tales. These are their teachings, their lessons of life – their truths.
Reading is the most undervalued tool for self-awareness and improvement.
If we need to find confidence, we can read inspiring self-development books. If we need to harness our emotions, we can read insightful psychological texts. If we need to re-evaluate our thinking processes, we can read thought-provoking philosophical manuscripts.
Whatever we need, whenever we need it, books are there to assist and aid our requirements – They show us the way, they calm our minds, they remedy our troubles. It is by the reading of different books that we empower our intellect, create new visions and manage our emotional well-being.
Thriving and succeeding in contemporary society begins with opening a book.
Whatever texts are selected, they are fountains of knowledge which exponentially increase our mind’s internal resources; they change the way we look at our external World; they stimulate us when we are discouraged and strengthen our resolve in the face of adversity.
Books teach us to focus and concentrate on what is most important to us. They keep us open-minded and well-balanced. They provide comfort when we are lonely. They share wisdom when we are uncertain. They make us smile when we are sad. They support us unconditionally. Perhaps, they are not books which we read, after all …
… perhaps, they are simply the heroes in the story of our life.
The ability to dream, wish, or hope distinguishes our species from all others. To imagine is to be set free from the reality – and its limitations – of the World in which we inhabit.
Imagination creates a vision for what could be without restraint. It allows the impossible to become possible. It allows what did not exist before to live, to breathe – to become true. It is through our imagination that goals are set and accomplished. Feelings of optimism and enthusiasm, even motivation, are manifested by first imagining what the outcome could be if the situation we wish for becomes physically tangible.
The importance of visualising whatever we want to achieve is paramount in creating our future. The images that play in our minds are the blueprint for change and opportunity. The mental pictures we create are the internal catalysts for navigating the way ahead.
But you have to imagine for yourself …
Great ideas, concepts and innovation are born in our imagination. Creative behaviour and associated emotions are affected by our wishes and hopes. Ultimately, imagination influences everything we are and that we do regardless of profession, background or education.
Our imagination is our purest self …
No matter where you are whilst reading this article, we all have one thing is common: the power to imagine a better world for ourselves, and for those we love. A life filled with potential is a life filled with imagination. The sky is not the limit; the limit is as far as your imagination will take you.
No two imaginations are the same – no two people can or ever will imagine the same better world, but this is what makes us human – this is what make us the most diverse, creative and successful species to walk the Earth.
Take just three of our fellow humans as examples:
Charlie Chaplin used his imagination to entertain the world.
Martin Luther King used his imagination to abolish slavery.
Picasso used his imagination to create beauty.
These icons of the past did not suddenly wake up one morning with their dreams finalised and in place. No, they undertook a lifetime of imagining the small daily changes and inner traits required to energise the power of their creativity. They imagined, they visualised and then – and only then – did they create a better world for you and me.
Arguably, our lives are about seeing reality as it is and subsequently, using our imagination to mould our characters into a version of perfection in an imperfect world.
The simple act of letting our minds roam and picturing ourselves as a better person or visualising a better place in which to live is what inspires us, every morning, to wake up feeling revitalised and refreshed – ready to overcome the challenges that are thrown at us by reality.
It is fair to say that one of the reasons for human existence to continue and thrive is our ability to form relationships with one another for the purpose of meeting common needs. If there is one word by which Humanity can be defined and reflected, then use of the simple word “community” suffices perfectly. The connection of one human being to other human beings who are like-minded is absolutely fundamental to our sense of well-being and survival.
When a group of strangers initially come together and discover they are mutually bound by core principles such as values, history, social environment, economic interests, ethnicity, etc, we describe this inherent facet of our nature as “forming a community”.
In today’s World of fast information, fast transportation, and fast social change, the actual meaning of “community” has lost some of its potency; it has a far deeper connotation than most of us realise. Ironically, because in the modern age we co-exist in diverse societies and cultures that are becoming more exclusive, being part of a community is as vital as it has ever been.
Communities are not physical things. They do not offer havens or places to live. Communities provide moralistic foundations, emotional feelings, solid friendships, and shared experiences. However and most importantly of all, communities supply members with an identity – an individual sense of belonging to a collective which pledges trust, safety, care and support.
Being identified as a part of that community, individual members are suddenly enabled to influence their environments and empower their peers for a better existence. Without a community to belong to in the 21st Century, people invariably struggle to comprehend their external world and, as a consequence, forget the most priceless of human qualities – their internal worthiness.
Membership of a community is a treasure that cannot be understated or undervalued. It delivers a sense of belonging, sustains emotional strength, and defines the very boundaries of an individual. To know that you are an intrinsic participant in a community – and to know who is not – is the basis for personal success and development.
As a species, we are tribal creatures. We may feel – or are made to feel – different to others; we may have independent and unique thoughts; we may prefer our own company, but we are at our most content when we can share our views and actions with people who instinctively understand where we are coming from – and we join that tribe.
Lone wolves, we are not, but lone wolves there are. Here is a parable that sums up the dynamic creation of a community and demonstrates our most treasured belonging – membership of one:
“A lone wolf announces that he wants to compete in a hunting competition against an invincible pride of lions. Out of necessity and hunger, other lone wolves come from far and away to attend the first meeting as strangers. This group, now affiliated through individual needs, practise together to form a cohesive hunting party that can compete against the well-rehearsed lions and win.
The competition begins and each lone wolf sacrifices self-interest and hunts hard for the benefit of the whole group. Unbelievably they win; the lions are beaten. Other animals congratulate them on their success and, for the first time, the lone wolves are acknowledged and honoured by their peers. One of the lone wolves suggests that, from now on, they meet up on a regular basis and look for food as one unit. They do, they discuss their skills, they improve their techniques – and never go hungry again.
When we get the reflective statement wrong, the individual tends to clarify their feelings further, which allows us another opportunity.
When we hone in on an individual’s emotions we are “demonstrating empathy” by echoing back their internal feelings; this allows people to feel deeply understood and therefore creates an instant-connection.
Reflective Statement #2: A Balanced Reflection
When an individual is stuck in any area of their life, most of us try and jump-right-in and solve their problem as quickly, and as decisively as possible.
Reflective Statements - A Balanced Reflection (Part 2 of 3) - YouTube
A balanced reflection takes into account that most of us like to feel deeply understood, before hearing an outer prescription to fix an inner concern.
The simple act of reflecting back their ambivalence, via a balanced reflection, allows us to echo back their inner thoughts, and as a result “demonstrate empathy”.
A balanced reflection illuminates the argument that they are having in their own mind and probably have been for a long time; as a result, people tend to feel deeply understood which allows a strong-empathetic-connection to be created.
Reflective Statement #3: An Amplified Reflection
When we disagree with someone, many of us will try to argue with them from our own perspective, without taking into account the other person’s internal frame of reference.
Reflective Statements - An Amplified Reflection (Part 3 of 3) - YouTube
Statements are the gateways that allow us to move from greeting someone new to entering a conversation; in this article, we are going to focus our attention on a principle known as a “statement–guess”.
A “statement-guess” is when we verbalise our first impressions about someone, and then follow it up with a deduction about what this may mean.
This technique gives us the confidence to go with the flow of the interaction, as opposed to pre-scripting our words and coming across as wooden in conversation.
What Do I Make A Statement About?
In this guide, we will be illuminating seven different areas within our first impression of an individual that we can utilise to make a “statement-guess”.
Polarising Our Choices
For example, if we are going to make a “statement-guess” about a girl’s energy levels, then we can polarise our initial statement on the fact that she either has high, or low energy (in-depth examples follow below).
7 Tools To Transition A Conversation (Full Video) - YouTube
“Getting proximity” means moving physically close enough to a girl to start a conversation; this can be anything from 1.5- 3 metres away from her or her group.
By taking this small step it makes starting any new conversation appear more spontaneous, unplanned and natural.
With proximity in place; here are the 9 tested-ways to approach women.
Approach #1: The Pulsating Point
When we think about approaching women we tend to imagine ourselves walking over to a girl and either being accepted or rejected. As an alternative, we can use our body language as a way of initiating contact.
When we see an attractive lady we tend to feel a spike in our energy levels; we can harness this force by allowing it to flow into our arm, leading us to instantly point at the girl we like.
Compared to other approaches, pointing also limits the chances of being rejected in front of the other members of our current social environment.
We get eye contact from a girl.
We point at her straight away.
We add in a playful smile.
If she engages us then you can signal her to join us, or we point on the floor halfway to meet her there instead.
Best Scenarios To Implement
This strategy is best used in evening social environments such as bars and nightclubs. We can also utilise this approach when we are walking around in the daytime as a fun game to see which women react to our playful approach.
When a girl responds by pointing back at us, we can pretend that we were, in fact, pointing at someone behind her – this is a great way to initiate flirting at the start of a relationship.
Approach #2: The Camera Angle
In today’s generation of selfies, groupies and Instagram it’s normal and natural to see men and women taking an array of photographs on a day to day basis.
We can utilise this existing photo theme by asking women to take a picture of us as a way of initiating a conversation with her.
The camera angle can be used as a simple warm-up tool, a way of meeting women in all social situations and a go-to way of speaking to girls if we’re experiencing high levels of anxiety.
We hold our phone in our hand so it’s clear that we are about to ask someone to take a photograph.
We say “Excuse me” loudly and wait for the girl’s attention to focus on us; this may take 1-2 seconds.
When we have her gaze, we lift up our arm and say “Can you take a quick photo of me please.”
Best Scenarios To Implement
This approach works well on the street, in cafes and tourist locations; over time we’ve also found that it works well in any social setting including bars, nightclubs and even dance-floors.
Whenever you see a girl you like taking a selfie or a groupie; why not approach her and offer to take the photo on her behalf. This happens all the time in a social situation and is a great way to meet new people in a friendly way.
Approach #3: The Social Revolution
Working as a team in social settings is a great strategy; it can save a lot of time, effort and energy as well as introducing a new and fun dynamic.
Gary Gunn's "Social Revolution" Approach - YouTube
When speaking to a girl on a night out why not challenge her to be your group’s “wing-girl”; all we have to do is ask her to introduce other groups of women to our social circle.
On the same note, we can also act as a “wing-man” within our crowd and introduce girls to the other members of our entourage – the value arrives when we have an effective group synergy.
Before we go to a social setting we organise a wing-man or wing-girl in advance.
If we lack one, then we find one during the evening.
We act as their wing-man to freshen up the dynamic and create a fair exchange.
Best Scenarios To Implement
The best time to utilise this strategy is in any social setting; we can also push this concept further and look for introductions through any of our friends, family or social circles.
There’s a group game we can play in which anyone who loses eye contact with a member of the group has to instantly go over and approach the girl whom he has just glanced towards; this also serves to educate us to not be influenced by attractive women in the vicinity – which is a highly alluring trait.
Approach #4: The Open-End…
When we ask someone for their opinion and genuinely listen to their response, we are allowing that individual to feel valued at the moment – it creates a pause in time away from the day to day stressors in their life.
We can use this understanding as a way of engaging women in conversation by asking for their opinion on a specific topic – as long as the theme is interesting it’ll naturally open up a discussion.
The topic could be an open-ended question which allows for a fluidity of response: any matters related to relationships, dreams or the unknown work well.
We say “Excuse me” loudly and wait for her to gain our eye contact. This may take 1-2 seconds.
We say “Let me get you quick opinion on…”
We state our open-ended
When using this approach it’s best to recognise that we should stick to topics that we are genuinely curious about; otherwise, we tend to move the conversation away from this topic too quickly, and women notice that it was just a front to engage her in conversation.
Best Scenarios To Implement
This approach works well in cafes during the day; it also works equally well in all social environments if we have an interesting enough question – remember to always keep the question open-ended.
Instead of looking up answers to questions on Google, remember the question and use it as a way of starting new interactions with women: the key is to make it as natural and fluid as possible.
Approach #5: The Selective Statement
When we look around the room we can observe thousands of different items which we can focus our attention on; from the door shape to the paint colour or even the ceiling height.
Gary Gunn's "Selective Statement" Approach - YouTube
In this situation when fear sets in, we tend to revert back to our existing structure for socialising; if we don’t have a plan in place, we usually turn inwards and become anxious.
One way to eradicate this fear is by warming up our social muscles; this has the effect of calming our inner dialogue and preventing us from feeling doubts, worries and concerns.
We go to a social environment.
We speak to at least three men or women upon entering the environment.
By this time we are ready to start a conversation with someone new by simply turning to them and saying “hello”.
Best Scenarios To Implement
This strategy works best when we are in a social state of flow; once we are in the midst of speaking to people and we are emanating a fun and enjoyable vibe.
After speaking with a girl for a few minutes, mention that you are pleased that she finally had the courage to come and say “hello” to you – this works really well if there’s already some flirting between the two of you.
Approach #7: Location, Location, Location
If we are able to create an area of our own, in which we invite people into our world, it serves to save vital energy whilst also preventing us from “trying too hard” to approach women.
Gary Gunn's "Location, Location, Location" Approach - YouTube
One powerful way of doing this is via the use of exclamations; for example, we see an interesting item of clothing that a girl is wearing, and simply announce it to her as a way of starting a conversation.
The more sincere we are with our exclamations, the more receptive women will be to our initial approach – it’s a case of having the confidence to say exactly what we think.
We point at the article we are speaking about.
We then make our exclamation.
“Nice trousers; they look brand new!”
“I like your hat; it makes you look creative!”
“Interesting eye makeup; it makes you look exotic!”
Best Scenarios To Implement
We can use this strategy in any setting; as long as we have observed an item of clothing that we can comment on, we are then able to legitimately use this as a tool to engage her in conversation.
We can add an air of mystery to our initial statement by not making it clear whether we are complimenting a girl or not; for example, “Your hat; that’s an interesting design!”
Approach #9: Crossing The Rubicon
Many of us will opt for an “indirect approach” to starting a conversation with women, especially when we are feeling nervous, anxious and overwhelmed.
Gary Gunn's "Crossing The Rubicon" Approach - YouTube
In reality, we can save a lot of time, effort and energy by being upfront with our intentions from the outset – this is known as a “direct approach”.
This strategy requires confidence, but when mixed with tried and tested principles it quickly becomes a great tool for making impactful first impressions with women.
We recognise that we are approaching women to offer them a compliment; our aim is to make them feel good about themselves.
We make sure our feet are not directly pointing towards her, as this instinctively sets off her flight or fight response.
We exclaim “Excuse me” as loud as we can. The louder we speak our first words, the more likely we are to interrupt her thoughts and take her off her autopilot response.
We pause and wait for her to stop and gain our eye contact.
We then directly state why we have stopped to talk to her; it can be her choice of style, her hair or anything which is specific and unique to her. An example is “I had to stop you to say that I really love your style; especially your eye makeup; it looks great.”
We pause, hold her eye contact and wait for her to reply.
When we are using this strategy we have to recognise that there is a certain amount of rejection that will come our way. Instead of avoiding this feeling we should embrace it as a learning lesson to toughen us up and refine our approach for future interactions.
Best Scenarios To Implement
This approach is best implemented during the day, though it can also be effective on a night out; just be mindful that if we are in a fixed social environment then ideally we want to gain some positive eye contact first to reduce our risk of rejection.
In our day to day life look for opportunities to compliment people; this allows us to get used to making people feel good about themselves, whilst also giving us real-life exposure to this approach.
When we are able to reply to the subtext of any given scenario, it gives us a tool to start communicating with people at a much deeper level. For example, asking them if they are feeling ok is a better strategy for deep level communication as opposed to the surface level discussion of their coffee.
Subtext allows us to recognise that it’s not really about their coffee, and in fact permits us to delve deeper to assist with their emotional needs.
Subtext in the real world
Often we are not able to communicate with each other effectively because we tend to focus on the outer shell of discussion, rather than opening up and seeing what’s inside. In a recent dating study, we can see that 59% of people agree that there is someone out there for everyone, so being able to understand their undertones allows us to connect at a much deeper level.
Being able to utilise subtext allows us to cut through layers of communication and get right to the core of women’s emotions, feelings and beliefs.
When we merge together different parts of her subtle sub communication cues, it allows us to really understand her as a whole rather than just focussing on the present conversation.
Tuning Into Subtext
When we are in dialogue with women having the ability to label the emotion behind her words is an extremely powerful tool. It shows that we are able to understand her as an individual.
For example, most of us try and solve a woman’s problems immediately, rather than trying to understanding the subtext of her words.
In my experience; here is a typical conversation than many men have with women.
Girl – “I can’t believe that they gave me a parking ticket; I was only parked there for 5 minutes max and there is nowhere else where I could have possibly parked my car. I’m a student and I can only just about afford to live while I study without having an extra fine for no reason.”
Most guys – “You can definitely fight that claim. I know someone who has got off the same thing. So don’t worry we can just write them a letter.”
The problem with this type of communication is that although we are trying to solve the physical problem, we are not doing anything to aid the emotional trauma by allowing her to vent her frustrations.
Utilising subtext – “it seems you’re frustrated and feel like it’s unfair.” When we label her emotion correctly she’ll reply with either “yes” or “that’s right”.
Girl – “Yes; I really don’t know what to do.” The girl has now vocalised her emotions and been understood. It’s at this stage we are able to then give her a rational way of dealing with her concern.
Three core words for labelling emotions
It seems …
It appears …
It looks …
The Context of Subtext
To truly understand the undertones of any given scenario we need to look for clusters of information which paint the full picture.
So ideally we want to be hearing the words a girl is saying, listening to the tone of her voice and also paying attention to her body language. When we are able to put all of these together in tandem we have the correct context to understand the subtext in its entirety.
For example; here are the same sentences spoken with different tonality and altered body language to create different meanings.
Girl’s words – “I’m seeing someone.”
Girl’s tonality – Strong and stern.
Girl’s body language – Facing away
Subtext – She’s in a serious relationship and is not interested in us.
Girl’s words – “I’m seeing someone.”
Girl’s tonality – Quiet and weak
Girl’s body language – Facing towards us
Subtext – She’s in a relationship currently, but see’s us as a potential partner.
Girl’s words – “I’m seeing someone.”
Girl’s tonality – Quiet and weak.
Girl’s body language – Facing towards us and holding deep eye contact.
Subtext – She’s in a non-serious relationship and is interested in us.
Us – I often feel that life can be strenuous and difficult a lot of the time. As kids we’re not taught how to deal with our emotions and it can very difficult not to let them get in the way especially when we’re trying to perform.
We can then continue this conversation until we get a sense that we are going too deep; then we can fluctuate back to a more positive theme.
How To Truly Connect With Women – The Perfect Blend Of Emotions
In my experience the best way to truly connect with women is to first focus on the negative end of the spectrum. This is normally the area that most men are too scared to delve down deeper; due to the vulnerability required to truly relate based on our inner most feelings.
Once we have connected with her roots in the underworld; we can then bond within the sky of her conscioow usness; thus creating the perfect blend of emotional dynamism.